Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Week 13ish - Update from Travis

Travis Harms (a young adult from my church) is doing his internship in northern Manitoba this summer.  He is asking for people to pray for him.  Here is the week 13ish update:
This past two weeks I have worked at Steeprock Bay Bible Camp and they were an exhausting but a rewarding two weeks. The first week I was counseling a cabin of guys from Sapotaweyak and one of them rededicated his life to the Lord. I saw a growing interest in the Bible and spiritual things in another lad. They all shared some of the hardships of living on the reserve and my heart breaks for some of them. One guy had lost a brother to drowning a few years back and others had it rough as well. I thought to myself that there is no way that I can help these kids with what they are dealing with. I cannot relate because I do not go through the same things day in and day out. The only thing I can do is love them and show that I care and pray for them. Another friend from Cormorant that came to camp with questions about God and heard the gospel, yet he is still held back by something and feels that he needs to be clean before he can come to God. I chatted with him on the bus ride back to the Pas. I will visit him in Cormorant and hope that he comes to faith.

The next week was teen's camp and I was the speaker. I did not get to know the kids as well that week compared to counseling but I was glad for the opportunity. Teens camp is different because there are kids that have come to camp for years and years and years and more are Christians than the junior weeks. I had some good talks with a two different guys from Sap and I am glad to see the Lord work in both of their lives. I notice in a lot of the kids that they want to succeed in life, they want to be strong and proud and make a bright future for themselves. Even if that means leaving the reserve and their families to get out of the environment that can be negative for young people.

On Thursday last week was the 8th Annual Bike Ride for Suicide Awareness put on by Phillip and Georgina Constant. Their family has been affected by suicide and so they started a bike ride to raise awareness and to show people that they care. The ride was well attended, I came up from camp to take part for the day. We rode from the Saskatchewan border to the Pas, 25 miles. There were many people that wrote names of people on the back of their shirts to show who they had lost to suicide. At the end was a barbecue and the mayor of the Pas came out. It was a good time of riding together and meeting people I wouldn't normally meet. I had a good chat with the Junior Chief about his dreams for his people.

At the bike ride I also observed the cultural practice of elders first. I sort of noticed it but when William "Shorty" Lathlin announced the beginning of eating, he said, "elders first" and then I remembered how I'd seen that practice before but that is when it clicked. Another practice is nicknames, William Lathlin is "Shorty", the bus driver is "Turtles". Sometimes folks do not even know someone's real name, only their nickname. It happens in the Pas and in Cormorant.

Family Camp is this week, I'll head back to Cormorant soon as well and prayers would be appreciated for that as I visit folks there again. Kene and Millie Jackson are coming out this week too. Should be exciting!!

-Travis Harms

No comments: